Stories That Make Values Tangible

Mar 21, 2022

Sharon Salyer is our latest placement at North Helpline, a nonprofit that provides basic needs including food, housing and utility assistance. Sharon, a retired award-winning journalist who spent more than three decades at The Herald of Everett, is helping the agency with communications. Recently, she’s been writing about local businesses that partner with North Helpline, including Kaffeeklatsch in Seattle’s Lake City neighborhood. Kaffeeklatsch participates in the agency’s Empty Bowls fundraiser giving out soup in handcrafted bowls. “The owner of the business is just a delight to talk to and very engaged in her community and is hoping her business, which is also a bakery, can become more of a gathering place as COVID recedes.” 

The story, while doing a great job of profiling a community partner that’s participating in a fundraiser, runs even deeper. It makes values like helping others and affirming human dignity tangible. And Sharon’s ability to tell multi-layered stories in a compact way is something North Helpline is gaining from. “I want to do everything I can to make these pieces attractive and engaging,” she says. 

A friend texted Sharon the other night and said “Gee, it sounds like things are going really well for you and that you’re happy.”  Sharon replied, with a focus on her Companis work at North Helpline: “Yes, I can honestly say that I feel really good about the organization and how it treats people who come in for help. And I appreciate their openness to me.”